Garmin HRM Problems

Hello – I am having a heck of a time with my HRM straps and have gone through at least five or six over the past 5 years.  My last strap (HRM-Run) only lasted for 25 uses and only worked for 23 of those.  This last strap should be easily replaced under warranty, but it is a pain to go through this so often.  I rinse the strap thoroughly with lukewarm water after each use and hand wash it with a little laundry soap once a week.  I have tried to handle the straps carefully and don’t drop them or fold/bend them sharply.  The only thing that I have been doing is using a small amount of Spectra 360 Electrode Gel on the contact pads.  What kind of life are others seeing from either the HRM-Tri or HRM-Run?   I typically run 5 to 6 times per week for an average of about 40 miles/week.  The straps connect with a FR-920XT watch and the symptoms seem to be an elevated but not erratic HR followed by a failure to connect.  If I change the battery, the strap only seems to last a very short while.  Any advice or help would be appreciated.